American Cancer Society recommends yearly mammograms starting at age 40 and continuing for as long as one is in good health. Few people are aware that the death from heart disease in women is more than all cancers together. A study published in February 2011 (1) looked at the question whether mammography can be an early, valid tool for predicting the development of coronary heart disease in woman.
Breast Arterial Calcification and Heart Disease
Patient who have screened positive for breast arterial calcification where more than three times as likely to develop heart disease than four times as likely to have a stroke in the five-year period after the mammogram was tame compared to the patients without any calcifications. In fact after your calcifications were more predictive of heart disease and stroke than high blood pressure, high cholesterol and family history. This is another study which confirms why we need to consider any sign seriously and do not downplay any information regarding our health.
Unfortunately, many radiologists do not report about possible classification on the mammogram on the broad basis. I believe sincerely that patients need to follow up on this question and make sure that this issue has been reviewed by the physician and radiologist. The possible classification if taken seriously on time could help in encroachment of lifestyle changes and early prevention.
- Schnatz PF, Marakovits KA, O’Sullivan DM. The association of breast arterial calcification and coronary heart disease. Obstet Gynecol. 2011 Feb;117(2 Pt 1):233-41. doi: 10.1097/AOG.0b013e318206c8cb.
To discover other high impact articles and tips go to http://themedcircle.com/essential-articles/